July 24, 2014

Church Landscape Begins to Change in North America

Ed. We tend to avoid speculation at AOI blog but this tidbit caught our eye. HT: Orthodox England. As a result of a teleconference on 1 July, the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America has divided its Washington and New York Diocese into two. This means that it has changed the title of its head, Metropolitan Jonah. He is now to be known as ‘Archbishop of Washington and Metropolitan of all America and Canada’. This change means that there is now no overlap between Metropolitan Jonah’s title and that of Metropolitan Hilarion, First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, Metropolitan of New York and Eastern America. This appears to be the beginning of further profound transformations in the Orthodox Church landscape of North America and indeed worldwide. We remind readers that the former head of the parishes of the Moscow Patriarchate in North America, Archbishop Mercurius, was earlier this year removed to Moscow and has not been replaced. … [Read more...]

The Perplexing Problem of Obtaining an Accurate Census of Orthodox Faithful Living in America

Hartford Institute for Religion Research HT: Orthodox Christian Laity A Quick Question How many Eastern Orthodox are there in the USA? The quick answer: Far less than usually reported. The longer answer: According to a recent study of Orthodoxy in the United States, the real membership (number of adult adherents and their children) in all Eastern Christian Churches in the USA can be estimated at about 1,200,000 persons. This figure is considerably less than the commonly accepted estimations, which range as high as over four million. The greatest disproportions between "claimed" and actual memberships were found in the two largest Orthodox jurisdictions: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese (typically claimed 1,954,500* members versus 440,000 actual adherents) Orthodox Church in America (1,000,000* versus 115,000 actual adherents)* membership figures are from the Yearbook of American & Canadian Churches, National Council of Churches, 2000. The most likely reason for … [Read more...]